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Proposed communal kitchen at Quorn - scheme rejected - 1918

Loughborough Herald - 28th February 1918

In connection with the Food Economy Campaign, a public meeting was held at the Village Hall, Quorn, on Thursday evening, to consider the advisability of organising a communal kitchen for the village. There was a moderate attendance, and Mr S Hallam presided.

The Chairman said the meeting had been called to ascertain the probable support a kitchen scheme would meet with. The committee were anxious to discover if there was need for such a kitchen. If there was, they were prepared to start one. The idea was to economise the use of food. By a communal kitchen they could buy in bulk, and by having their cooking done by experienced persons the food would be prepared in ways not generally adopted in the ordinary household. Whatever was done, there must be no charity about the scheme. Every thing must be paid for, and no profit made beyond that sufficient to pay expenses.

Mr C Adams read the report of the sub-committee appointed to investigate the matter, which stated that as to premises, the committee of the Conservative Club had agreed to lend the skittle alley at a rental of 2s 6d per week, and two large gas stoves, a large copper, a counter, and cooking utensils would be required, with the services of an experienced cook. The committee had not been successful in obtaining such a person, and realised that the success of the scheme depended upon this appointment. A staff of voluntary workers would also be required. Food should be bought locally, and no arrangements could be made of the consumption of meals on the premises. The kitchen would be open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, from 12.30 to 2 o'clock, and should be self-supporting, any sum advanced by the local authority to be repaid. It was estimated that 50 would be required for the establishment fund. If the committee could depend upon serving 250 portions each day, ranging in price from 4d to 1d each, they would be able to carry on satisfactorily.

Mr E W Hensman related his experience of a visit to the communal kitchen lately established in Nottingham. A specimen menu was presented, with prices as follows: Soup, 1d. half-pint; potatoes and other roots, 1d per portion; meat, 6d and pudding 3d per portion; and if 50 portions each were served it could be made to pay. It would be possible in Quorn to supply family dinners, which would, of course, be supplied at cheaper rates.

The Vicar spoke in support of the scheme, stating that it would mean economy in coal and labour and certainly in food. The whole question depended upon the amount of support the scheme would meet with. He moved "That in the opinion of this meeting the time has arrived when a communal kitchen for the use of this village should be started." - This was seconded by Mr A Freer.

Some discussion took place, and Mr Turner said most people, as long as they could obtain a dinner, preferred to cook and eat it at home. Mr S J Wright stated that the chief difficulty was the expense: 50 was a small sum for such a scheme. Speaking from his experience of the village, he did not think such a scheme would meet with success. Mr M Rumsey spoke in favour of the scheme, but the resolution, on being put, was lost. On the proposition of Mr E C Laundon, seconded by Mr J H Johnson, a vote of thanks to the committee for their efforts was carried.

 Submitted on: 2011-01-24
 Submitted by: Kathryn Paterson
 Artefact ID: 1191
 Print: View artefact in printer-friendly page

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